Deterministic single-photon source for distributed quantum networking

Phys Rev Lett. 2002 Aug 5;89(6):067901. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.89.067901. Epub 2002 Jul 19.


A sequence of single photons is emitted on demand from a single three-level atom strongly coupled to a high-finesse optical cavity. The photons are generated by an adiabatically driven stimulated Raman transition between two atomic ground states, with the vacuum field of the cavity stimulating one branch of the transition, and laser pulses deterministically driving the other branch. This process is unitary and therefore intrinsically reversible, which is essential for quantum communication and networking, and the photons should be appropriate for all-optical quantum information processing.